The sale of flavored tobacco products is about to be a thing of the past in Middletown, R.I., as on Monday night the town council approved a number of changes for tobacco retailers, including a ban on the sale of flavored tobacco in most places.
All retailers who sell tobacco products will now be required to get a license from the town in order to keep doing so, which will cost $100 per year. Retailers will also be prohibited from accepting coupons, offering price discounts or sales promotions, such as a buy two, get one free offer. In other words, all tobacco products must be sold for the full retail price.
As part of the licensing requirement, all retailers will now be subject to a minimum of two yearly inspections for compliance with tobacco sales rules. Violators of tobacco sales laws will face a first-time fine of $250, which can elevate to $500 and a suspension of the license for subsequent offenses.
As for flavored tobacco, its sale is being banned from the majority of retailers, though smoking bars and electronic smoking device establishments will not be subject to the ban.
The changes go into effect on Nov. 1.
Middletown is home to just over 16,000 residents and is located on the state’s Aquidneck Island.